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Is Arkansas better than Colorado? – The Road to Leadman – Part 6

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Colorado is a beautiful State, combining both plains and mountains, amazing rivers, trails galore, and an outdoor spirit….but the same can be said for Arkansas.  In fact, the Arkansas River begins in the Salida valley of Colorado and then works its way to the great State of its name sake.  While standing on the small concrete bridge straddling the 20 yard wide Arkansas River in downtown Salida, … [Read more...]

Hey…Coach! – The Road to Leadman, Part 5

James and Leadville Legend Ken Choulbler

"You’re better than you think you are.  You can do more than you think you can!”– Ken Chlouber, founder of the Leadville Race series an imminent coach to all participants For most of us when we hear someone yell “Hey, coach” it takes us back to our early school days, a time when “Coach” was a title of respect and when our ideas and concepts of what a coach is were formed.  Coach told you what to … [Read more...]

Polar Vortex – Part 4, The Leadman Series

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  “I am the great and mighty Polar Vortex. All of North America shivers in my presence.” – @PolarVortex What does the Polar Vortex have to do with Leadman…a lot.  This being January 7th, many of you have New Year’s resolutions you have made and are working to fulfill.  Often those revolve around exercise and getting into shape, losing weight, and to stop engulfing large boxes of Nerds … [Read more...]

The Road to Leadman

Descending "Powerline" at the 2012 Leadville 100

Leadman….what does that word evoke.  To most it is a mystery word, not meaning anything in particular…something about a man that is very heavy maybe??? A Leadman, or Leadwoman for the female persuasion, is an extraordinary endurance athlete who has completed five running and cycling events in a given year in Leadville, Colorado as part of the Leadville Race Series. Specifically, a Leadman does … [Read more...]

The Dirty Tri

"If you're a strong swimmer, the middle of the front is a good idea, if you're not a strong swimmer, the middle of the front is a bad idea." - Fred Phillips

As the racers entered the water they were reminded how lucky they were. "Two months ago it was 110 degrees for a triathlon here, today it's only 55 degrees, exactly half as hot," race director Fred Phillips said over the bullhorn. Those who were at this race last year probably remember it being below 40 degrees when they entered Lake DeGray for the first leg of the DeGray XTERRA Sprint and Epic … [Read more...]

On a Scale of One to Stupid

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On a scale of one to stupid, attempting to compete in an event called 40 Acres of Hell as a last minute bit of fun, is stupid-er. Whatever else, my method of event participation in place of actually training  for events, is consistent. But that kind of stupidity ranks right up there with things that follow "here, hold my beer." Each weekend of October offers a variety of events to attend … [Read more...]

Tri at Toad Suck

The sun rises on a day of racing.

I first lined up to compete in the Toad Suck Tri about 10 years ago, back when it was just the CATS Sprint Tri. I did the race a couple of times over the years and my daughter did it once as part of a relay. It was smaller back then with just the sprint triathlon as the only event of the day. It was also the first race where my wife, Lisa, yelled, "hurry up and finish so we can go home," she's … [Read more...]

Couch to 5K meets TriArkansas

Scott goes aero on the bike portion.

I am currently trying to get myself back in shape, or some form of it.  My Couch to 5k program is in full swing, and I am entering week 5 of 8.  Sunday while doing my run/walk program I had a lot of time to think.  I also got so hot and winded by the end of my 30 minute program that I thought I was going to puke.  It was pretty hot and humid, but not quite as bad as the conditions of the past … [Read more...]

Mad Dogs and Triathletes

The basic concept.

Although a lot of racing in Arkansas slows down a bit in the steam of August, there are some intrepid competitors not afraid to wade through the thick air of the dog days to challenge themselves and others, triathletes. Maybe it's because they start with a swim that the moisture laden air actually feels welcoming or maybe the schizophrenia of doing three types of racing in one event creates a "Mad … [Read more...]

Tri to Beat the Rain

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They lined up along the walls of the concrete tunnel, the darkness at the end of the hallway would be their entry to athletic stardom. Jittery with anticipation, some had their swim goggles in place. Perhaps it was to shield others from seeing the game plan in their eyes, perhaps it was just a sign of readiness. Let's get this party started!  They had already laid out their towels, parked their … [Read more...]